Day four marked the first day in which we would be working on our final piece. It was therefore with excitement, but also some slight apprehension, that we headed down to breakfast.

Before we could work on our piece though, we first had to listen to everyone’s piece based around the rhythmic cycles we had learned about on the previous day. I found it interesting hearing what my peers had come up with given the same tuition. I found it very interesting that the pieces were so varied, despite the narrow range of instrumentation and material we had available to us. This goes to show the exceptional creativity of the group of young people I was with!

My piece based around a rhythmic cycle, titled ‘3-Bar Cycle’ (it’s what it says on the tin), can be found on SoundCloud at the following link:

Once this morning performance session was complete, it was time to crack on with our final compositions. Everyone approached this differently. Many immediately jumped up and rushed to computers, switching on Sibelius before I had time to think. Some went to the pianos around the room and began testing out ideas. However, I wanted to push myself out of my comfort zone; I therefore began by developing a concept for what my piece would be: a search for tonality. Over the week, my goal was to try and come closer to finding my voice as a composer, and so I felt that a reflection of the struggles and hardships that come with such searches would be an excellent premise for my final piece. I then began composing – or rather planning out ideas and motifs – entirely by hand. I felt that it would be a very interesting challenge for me to write a whole piece without a computer, so that is what I decided I would attempt to do. It was a daunting prospect, but one which I was excited to embark upon.